Dead Men Tell No Tales - Poem by Chinonye Anyichie
There, I sat, pruning weeds off his grave,
A great story teller he was,
Recounting his youthful deeds with great vigor;
He had not a match in sight.
Just as I would sit beside him listening in awe,
With the raffia hand fan working silently not to interrupt,
Today, I sat by his grave, quiet,
Remembering his tales
Of long ago moments told with elderly insight,
About great sunny deeds told now with a longing sigh,
O how the old envy the youth!
The Man is no more now,
But his stories hold on,
Each passing day births a new detail,
Thinking I have heard it all,
I learn a new; in the Half Sun War, he was a Soldier.
Why was this sealed in his lips I wonder?
"Why tell sordid tales of war
When there are sunny stories to go around? "
I hear him answer.
But would he have thought differently
If he had remembered that dead men tell no tales?
Dona Curtis King
The Man Who Lived
The Soldier Who Was
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